Conditional forbearance as an alternative to capture

Evidence from coal mine safety regulation

Sanford Gordon, Catherine Hafer

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

    Abstract

    INTRODUCTION Regulatory agencies are often accused of offering forbearance to powerful actors within the industries they are charged with overseeing, possibly in violation of their statutory mandates and to the potential detriment of the broader public. The term bureaucratic capture is often employed as a shorthand for this phenomenon. Any attempt to construct a coherent analytical framework for understanding it, and to assess its empirical referents, however, must confront the interaction between two broad forces shaping the context in which regulators act: efforts by firms within the industry to protect and promote their economic interests and the actions of the regulators’ political superordinates. Regulatory agencies are fundamentally complex hierarchies – chains of principal–agent relationships – consisting of many tiers of civil servants overseen by a leadership appointed by, and ultimately (more or less, depending on the extent of agency independence) responsive to, elected public officials (and, by extension, the public). At all levels of an agency's hierarchy, occupants are, to some extent, responsive to the incentives created for them by their administrative or political superordinates. To the extent that the goals of those superordinates may change, whether because the superordinates themselves have been replaced or because they have revised their regulatory goals, one may expect commensurate changes in the behavior of regulators.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Title of host publicationPreventing Regulatory Capture: Special Interest Influence and How to Limit it
    PublisherCambridge University Press
    Pages208-238
    Number of pages31
    ISBN (Electronic)9781139565875
    ISBN (Print)9781107036086
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2013

    Fingerprint

    coal
    regulation
    industry
    civil servant
    accused
    evidence
    incentive
    leadership
    firm
    interaction
    economics

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Social Sciences(all)

    Cite this

    Gordon, S., & Hafer, C. (2013). Conditional forbearance as an alternative to capture: Evidence from coal mine safety regulation. In Preventing Regulatory Capture: Special Interest Influence and How to Limit it (pp. 208-238). Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139565875.014

    Conditional forbearance as an alternative to capture : Evidence from coal mine safety regulation. / Gordon, Sanford; Hafer, Catherine.

    Preventing Regulatory Capture: Special Interest Influence and How to Limit it. Cambridge University Press, 2013. p. 208-238.

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

    Gordon, S & Hafer, C 2013, Conditional forbearance as an alternative to capture: Evidence from coal mine safety regulation. in Preventing Regulatory Capture: Special Interest Influence and How to Limit it. Cambridge University Press, pp. 208-238. https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139565875.014
    Gordon S, Hafer C. Conditional forbearance as an alternative to capture: Evidence from coal mine safety regulation. In Preventing Regulatory Capture: Special Interest Influence and How to Limit it. Cambridge University Press. 2013. p. 208-238 https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139565875.014
    Gordon, Sanford ; Hafer, Catherine. / Conditional forbearance as an alternative to capture : Evidence from coal mine safety regulation. Preventing Regulatory Capture: Special Interest Influence and How to Limit it. Cambridge University Press, 2013. pp. 208-238
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